Friday, November 07, 2008

O.V. Wright - There Goes My Used To Be (Goldwax 106)


There Goes My Used To Be

"Roosevelt called me up in the middle of the night," recalls Quinton. "He says, 'Hey, man, I got these guys I sure would like you to hear.' Well, I'd already gone to bed, it was after midnight, and he says 'I got a little home recording. Would it be okay if I come out and let you listen?' I said, 'Man, come on.' I was living right here, same place, and he came out with a little recorder, and we got down on the floor in the living room, and he played me his tapes, and they just knocked me out. And we took O.V. into the studio."
- from Peter Guralnick's Sweet Soul Music

"I remember the way I met James and O.V.," says Quinton, "It was right here on my doorstep in 1963, when I heard a knock on my door at about ten o'clock one night and found Roosevelt Jamison, James Carr and O.V. Wright standing there. They had this little portable tape recorder, so we sat right down here on this floor and listened to some tapes. Both of them just knocked me out, and I made moves to sign 'em on the spot."
- from Barney Hoskyns' Say It One Time For The Brokenhearted

As I've said before, "...it remains a shining moment that lives on in all of our imaginations."

It sure does. When I first read those words some twenty years ago, I never could have imagined this:


As part of our weekend long tribute to O.V. Wright, we will be hosting an informal luncheon with Roosevelt Jamison and Quinton Claunch on November 15th at 12 noon. How cool is that?

We'll be doing lunch at the fabled Rendezvous, one of the Bluff City's most venerable institutions, which has been serving up their trademark 'dry' ribs downtown for over sixty years. We'll have the opportunity to sit down and talk with these two legendary figures about that fateful night in Memphis Soul history that somehow changed everything. This should really be something, folks! For more information, and to reserve your seat at the table, please click here.

This cool song we have here today was actually supposed to be the A side of O.V.'s first secular release, but the mighty, mighty That's How Strong My Love Is just took over. Roosevelt Jamison wrote both sides.

In my post about that timeless flip last year, I said "A couple of questions I have about this monumental record remain unanswered... Guralnick reports that Claunch 'took O.V. into the studio'... what studio? I'm guessing FAME, but I'm not sure. It'd be great to identify that cool guitarist..."

I asked Roosevelt about the studio... "Let me see," he said, "I think it might have been over on Chelsea..."

Chelsea, I figured, could only mean one thing, American Sound, in the early days of its existence. Still I wasn't sure, so I called Chips Moman. "Yup, it was American," he told me. We talked a little bit about who the guitarist might have been, Reggie Young, Chips himself? "I can tell you this, it wasn't Reggie," he said, "and it might have been me, only at that point I was spending most of my time behind the board..." Hmmm...

We'll have to ask Quinton over lunch, then.

Come join us.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Paul Pollmann said...

I sure am hungry and in the mood for some Memphis ribs. I'll join you there for lunch. It's gonna be great. Nice work again, Red.
Does this American Sound Studio still exist by the way? Guess not, but I think I can ask mr. Claunch that personally at The Rendezvous..

Later,
Paul, Amsterdam

1:53 PM  
Blogger Red Kelly said...

Paul -

As I was saying here, "The building was demolished sometime in the nineties, and 827 Thomas Street is a litter-strewn vacant lot today... what a shame. You know, when you visit Memphis, it's hard not to notice the busloads of tourists that Graceland ferries over to Sun... and, after seeing what Stax has done with a rebuilt facsimile of their own bulldozed studio, it's not much of a stretch to envision an 'American Museum' on the corner of Chelsea and Thomas. The Elvis traffic alone would pay the bills. Now, wouldn't that be something?"

It sure would... maybe that'll be something that The Soul of Memphis Foundation could look into!

I'll see you down there, mijn broer. Can't wait!

3:16 PM  
Anonymous Eli Reed said...

Really wish I could be there. Maybe for the 2nd annual!

11:24 AM  

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